Alberta Minute: Doctors Vote, Police Threatened, and the Court Rules Against The Provinces
Alberta Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Alberta politics.
This Week In Alberta:
The Legislature is taking a break as this week is a Constituency Week where MLAs do work in their local ridings. There are also no Committee Meetings scheduled until April 6th, which is when the Legislature is also scheduled to return.
- The Alberta Medical Association will conclude voting on Tuesday on the provincial government's new plan for Doctors' compensation. Health Minister Tyler Shandro has struck a more conciliatory tone of late in an attempt to lower tensions and encourage AMA to accept the deal. The deal is supposed to be confidential until the results of the vote are released, however, there have been some snippets of the details in the media, including that there would be a hard cap on spending for at least two years.
- Consultations on the government's coal policy are set to commence today, but there appears to be confusion over what is actually planned for the consultation as no details have been released yet. You can sign up to receive updates on the government's consultation website here.
Last Week In Alberta:
- Last Thursday, the Supreme Court of Canada upheld the federal carbon tax. This leaves the provincial government in a bind, as they have no further legal recourse against the carbon tax and have indicated that they had not prepared a Plan B should they lose. As noted by our friends at Project Confederation, the case was about much more than just a carbon tax - it's a big loss for provincial autonomy in Canada and could have significant long-running implications for Alberta.
- Alberta's Justice Minister, Kaycee Madu, has given the Lethbridge Police Service just 3 weeks (from March 22) to lay out a plan that involves "significant" changes to how they operate after a number of officers were recently caught unlawfully spying on Shannon Phillips, a Lethbridge MLA. Madu brought out the threat of Section 30, which allows the Minister to disband the force should there not be progress towards reform. Madu noted that this was just the latest in a string of scandals affecting the Lethbridge Police.
- Alberta signed a six-month contract extension with radiologists as a bridging agreement while further negotiations take place. The Province had previously indicated that it was looking at more cost-effective methods of delivering these services.
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